By Nathan Jones
Why have the attacks on Jesus and Christianity been increasing in both frequency and intensity?
In this interview, Dr. David Reagan and I discuss the end time prophetic significance of the increasing persecution of believers in Christ, later televised on our program Christ in Prophecy.
End Times Sign
Dr. Reagan: We are going to take a look at the increasing attacks on Jesus and Christianity that are appearing today in books, films, television programs and websites. There is no doubt that these attacks are increasing in frequency and intensity. Why is this happening? Why do we see so much of this going on against both Christianity and Jesus?
Nathan Jones: I think I'll let Jesus answer that question, because the Apostles asked him that very same question and in relation to how would we know what the end times are going to be like. We can go to Luke 21 starting with verse 10.
"Then he said to them: 'Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilences in various places, and fearful events and great signs from heaven. But before all this, they will seize you and persecute you. They will hand you over to synagogues and put you in prison, and you will be brought before kings and governors, and all on account of my name. And so you will bear testimony to me... You will be betrayed even by parents, brothers and sisters, relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death. Everyone will hate you because of me. But not a hair of your head will perish. Stand firm, and you will win life.'"
So, Jesus' response to the Apostles was that the closer we get to the end times and finally to His return at the Second Coming, the more natural disasters and other signs of the end times will appear. One of the most significant signs especially to you and me as believers in Christ is the increasing persecution against Christians, and we are seeing that happening today.
Dr. Reagan: We live in a country that has a great Christian heritage. We live in a country where Christianity has been the predominate religion. We live in a country where 80-85% of the people still profess to be Christians, and yet there is this increasing persecution of Christianity and Christians and attacks on Jesus. What's going on in our country?
Nathan Jones: I believe that the more we sin the more we have to defend ourselves against what we by conscience know is truly right. Once we are convicted of what is truly right then we have to do something about that conviction. We have to repent. We have to turn to God for forgiveness, having to admit that there must be a God. In response it seems like there is a great push among people who hate God — the God haters — to remove anything that would remind them that their sins are wrong. So, they push the Bible out of reach. They push the Ten Commandments out of law. They even push Christians out of any kind of sphere of influence so that they can continue to live the lives they want to live which in reality is total rebellion against God.
Dr. Reagan: There is no doubt that there is an increasing virulence of attacks by those who claim themselves to be humanists, atheists and agnostics. But, I also think one of the problem groups in addition to those are that so many people claim to be Christians, but in truth are really just cultural Christians. They were just born into a Christian family and they were raised going to church, but they have no personal relationship with Jesus Christ. They've never read the Bible and never prayed, but claim to be Christians. And so, they're not really all that upset about the rise of secularism and the increasing secularization of our society today.
Nathan Jones: Oh, yes! And especially, too, when the laws aren't protected anymore and are not enforced. People then feel like they can get away with a lot more, which we are increasingly seeing. Not long ago it used to be taboo to mock Christianity, but now there are no repercussions for doing so.
Dr. Reagan: Right. It's like open season.
Nathan Jones: It is open season on Christianity indeed. We are certainly not protected by our legal system anymore, and as a matter of fact we find more increasing attacks on our Constitutional rights by judges themselves and by legislatures, and so it just continues to get worse. It's rather crazy, too, because the more the God haters pull the moral structure of our country down, the more our country losses its power and ability which will inevitably destroy the country. What this truly is is just evil. It is pure evil.
Dr. Reagan: Yes, evil is multiplying. Jesus Himself said that one of the signs of the end times would be that society would become like it was in the days of Noah. If you go back to Genesis 6 and take a look you'll see that in the days of Noah the two major characteristics of society were immorality and violence. That is exactly where we are in the United States today and certainly in the world at large with mankind's increasing immorality and violence.
Dr. Reagan: I think there is another supernatural element operating here, and that is Satan knows Bible prophecy. We know that because it says in the book of Revelation that when Satan tries in the middle of the Tribulation to take Heaven one last time he will be thrown down to earth by Michael and his angels and will not be allowed any access to Heaven whatsoever. It says that when that happens he knows his time is short. So, Satan knows Bible prophecy, and as he looks around today he sees clearly the signs of the times. I think he can put two and two together and conclude, "Hey, I don't have much time left." Now, the Church seems to be oblivious to the signs of the times, but Satan recognizes them. I think because of that he has launched motivating attacks more vicious than ever before on Christianity, Jesus, and the Bible. Those are the three things that are attacked all the time, because Satan wants to take as many people to Hell with him as he possibly can.
Nathan Jones: Yes, definitely. Isn't it strange and rather ironic that Satan is probably the best student of Bible prophecy? I mean, he knows Bible prophecy forward and backwards because it tells him that he is going to lose and Jesus is going to win, and those of us who follow Jesus are going to win as well. And so, he doesn't want the world to know he's technically already defeated. So, as Satan gets closer to his inevitable defeat, his attacks on Christianity increase in frequency and intensity just like all the other end times "birth pains" signs.
Dr. Reagan: I think that the focus of those attacks clearly shows that Satan recognizes that Jesus Christ was really who He said he was — that He is God in the flesh. Satan's not orchestrating attacks against Mohammed. He's not orchestrating attacks against Islam. He could care less about them. No, he is orchestrating attacks against the truth!
In fact, I have always pointed out for many, many years that I consider the blasphemous use of the name of Jesus as a curse word as evidence that He truly was who He said He was. How many people have you ever seen that use Judas as a curse word, or Mohammed as a curse word, or Abraham as a curse word, or Buddha as a curse word? No! Satan motivates people who are not Christians to use Jesus as a curse word, because he hates Jesus. It truly is a supernaturally motivated attack on Jesus.
Examples of Persecution
Nathan Jones: Exactly, and the attacks are getting worse and worse. I recently went to Opendoorsusa.org. They are a ministry that follows the persecution of Christians. Well, as bad as we have it in the United States with laws and rulings constantly being made against us, just look at the rest of the world. For example, the website reports that:
- In 2009, a gun and club attack on a Presbyterian Church in a community of Sang-Wali in Pakistan left 16 people wounded and one dead.
- In 2005, two Christian men who were working in Bangladesh were hacked to death.
- In Kathmandu, Nepal at the Assumption Church there was a bomb placed, resulting in two women and 14 others being injured.
- Even one of the missionaries that Lamb & Lion supports in Pakistan recently had a bomb placed in front of his church resulting in four of his members being killed including the mother of a baby.
And the list of persecutions of Christians goes on and on and on.
Dr. Reagan: Persecution of Christians is indeed going on all over the world, and it is certainly intensifying here in our own country. If you wear a cross to work you may be persecuted in that you may not get promoted. If you are a college faculty member and let it be known that you are a Christian who believes in the Bible, you'd probably better forget about any kind of advancement or getting tenure.
There is an orchestrated attack against Christianity in our society today and it's growing fiercer every day. In fact, this is one of the reasons why I recently wrote a book called Jesus the Lamb and the Lion. I wrote it out of one primary concern, and that is that everywhere I look today I am seeing attacks on the divinity of Jesus even by professing Christians who are claiming that Jesus wasn't really God in the flesh. They write Him off as just a great man or a great prophet, or whatever. I'm seeing everytime I turn around there is a movie, there is a book, there is a website attacking Christianity, attacking the Bible, and attacking Jesus by saying that He was not who He said He was — God incarnate.
In the next part of this series discussing the reasons behind the increasing attacks on Christianity, I'll question Dr. Reagan about just who the Bible says that Jesus is.